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Borrowing Policy

Loan Periods

  • 28-day loan period - applies to most materials

Staff can offer extended loans to 28-day loan material, excluding new or requested items (items “on hold” for another customer). The maximum due date can be extended up to the maximum renewal limit for the item (i.e. up to twelve (12) weeks from the date of original check out). The Manager may impose restrictions on the number of items that can be extended.

Borrowing Limits for Materials

Discovery cards and Non-Resident cards have limits on the number of items customers can borrow:

  • A maximum of 50 items can be checked out at any time.
  • A limit of two (2) DVD Express and two (2) Bestseller Express items can be checked out at any one time.
  • A maximum of 50 holds can be placed.
  • Access to digital collections and resources

Inspire card users can borrow materials and are subject to the same responsibilities as a Discovery card but with reduced borrowing limits:

  • A maximum of five (5) items can be checked out at any time
  • A maximum of one (1) Express item
  • A maximum of five (5) holds can be placed at any time
  • Access to digital collections and resources

Community cards have extended borrowing and loan periods.

  • A maximum of 200 items can be checked out at any one time
  • Ninety (90) day loan period for 28-day items
  • Games and periodicals are excluded from borrowing with this card
  • A maximum of ninety-nine (99) holds can be placed

Reciprocal card holders must have a valid library card from a participating library system.

  • Card holders may borrow up to eight (8) items and place two (2) holds.
  • These customers have the same loan periods as a Discovery card.
  • They do not have access to digital collections and resources, such as eBooks.


Most items may be renewed up to three (3) times following initial checkout. Items that are eligible for renewal will be automatically renewed on the due date. Customers with email notification will receive an email informing them of which items have been renewed and which items will be due. There are no renewals permitted on the following items:

  • Magazines
  • Items requested by another customer

Renewal of Interlibrary loan materials is subject to the guidelines of the lending library.

Reserves/ Holds

Customers with a valid Hamilton Public Library card may reserve an item that someone else is currently borrowing. This is referred to as placing an item on “hold.” The following circulating items cannot be reserved:

  • Magazines

Upon notification that a reserve is available, customers have 21 open days to pick up the item. eBook users have three (3) days (72 hours) to download their hold. Customers can choose to turn on an automatic borrowing feature that checks out the eBook copy as soon as it becomes available.